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PostPosted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:53 am 
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Just reposting something I put up on the Men's Health Fitness forums:

Posting this here because MH was the place I first started really looking into nutrition. I remember the threads talking about counting calories and WANE GAIN MAINTAIN calculations. BMR rates and Harris Benedict formula. I've used all of those and even had success doing so.

Now I'm starting to read more about calories not mattering much.

I'm reading Gary Taubes' book Why we get fat and what to do about it. Pretty compelling stuff. Here he is in an interview:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l59YyXpCT1M

The bullet points:
- We dont get fat because we eat more. We eat more because we get fat.

- Calories in and out is largely irrelevant.

- Insulin secretion makes us fat. Carbs make us secrete insulin.

- Remove carbs (sugars, grains etc) from your diet and replace it with fat.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:06 pm 
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There's a lot of research in the current literature that supports this.

I'm not giving them up entirely in a "paleo" style diet, but I have got them down significantly, and lost ~40lbs (220-180) in May and June this year.

Strict low-carb diets are less than 50g per day, with the less strict sitting from 50-150 (or 200, in some cases) per day. You want ultra-strict to lose weight, and then a bit more for a maintenance plan. Also, the carbs that you *do* eat should be as little processed as possible. Replace with equal parts fat and protein, although most people probably need more good fats relative to good protein in their diet.

Not only are carbs strongly linked to weight gain, but they're also linked to a variety of other states, in absence of excess weight- diabetes, in particular, but other auto-immune diseases as well.

The argument is that sugars are one of our main metabolic signalling agents, and so dumping a bunch of them into your system throws things off to a greater degree than any other type of energy source.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 3:27 pm 
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Yeah it's a compelling book, one that just rehashes his good calories, bad calories book. However, the latter was a more difficult read for the average person and was written more for those in the scientific community.

An interesting movie to go along with it is "Fat Head", a person's response to Super Size Me. It was on Netflix last I checked.

I need to go back on this diet. I lost 15 lbs in 1.5 months, was far less tired (never needed naps) and just felt better overall.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 2:17 pm 
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I'm watching Fat Head now, good stuff. I made a thread on NeoGaf that has more on this subject:

http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=502341

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 7:00 pm 
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People need to get past "diets" and find a healthy lifestyle that works for them. Whether it is Taube's or paleo or Atkins. You've got to commit.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 7:12 pm 
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I haven't read the subject books.

Where do things like fruit and berries (and other sources of natural sugars) fit into the equation?


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:07 pm 
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I forget who said it but one nutritionist said something along the lines of "I've yet to meet a fat person who got that way on too much fruit"

Fruit juice on the other hand is almost like drinking a soda.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:33 pm 
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What Dash said.

Eat whole fruits, avoid juices and be moderate with dried fruits.

They generally fit in the "less than 150g/day" regime. IF you're really going for weightloss rather than maintenance, you might want to moderate some of the more high-sugar fruits.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 10:04 pm 
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Yea, juice is liquid sugar for the most part...

I was just wondering about adding things like blueberries and raspberries to the occasional meal. Seems like the nutritional benefits would outweigh any negative caloric concerns (assuming its a few and not a ton).


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:57 am 
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Right, not a problem if you're eating the whole fruit. Just juices and dried you need to be careful of.

Most berries are fantastic for you, eat away.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:23 am 
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I eat tons of berries. Blue, black, rasp and straw. Love em. Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead!

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 12:09 pm 
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Hopwin wrote:
People need to get past "diets" and find a healthy lifestyle that works for them. Whether it is Taube's or paleo or Atkins. You've got to commit.


This +1.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 12:27 pm 
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Which does include exercise. There's always people out there that would take the idea that "we aren't fat because we eat to much and exercise too little" to mean "I don't have to exercise, which I don't like doing because it makes me hot and sweaty."

Not only that, but no amount of healthy living builds speed and strength. Only exercise does that.

My conversation with my new doctor:

"Will this impede my running?"

"I don't know, you need to see the orthopod, but either way running isn't the best way to lose weight or exercise"

"I know, but it's the only way to be able to run fast, and I ahve to be able to do that for my job"

"Oh.. yeah, that's true."

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:43 pm 
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Dash wrote:
I eat tons of berries. Blue, black, rasp and straw. Love em. Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead!


An odd question perhaps Dash, but, how do you eat berries? What I mean is, by themselves I find berries rather bitter since they have very low sugar content. Do you mix them with anything or do you just scoop up a raw handful and wolf them down?


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:52 pm 
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I'm borderline Type 2 diabetic, and have had two back surgeries. I don't get enough exercise to eat a ton of anything.. especially berries :p

I'll settle for sprinkling a few on the occasional salad :D


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2012 3:03 pm 
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Slythe wrote:
Dash wrote:
I eat tons of berries. Blue, black, rasp and straw. Love em. Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead!


An odd question perhaps Dash, but, how do you eat berries? What I mean is, by themselves I find berries rather bitter since they have very low sugar content. Do you mix them with anything or do you just scoop up a raw handful and wolf them down?


In the past with my oatmeal but I've been eating much less of that. So yeah really just by themselves. love em. Berries are one of those hit or miss things depending on quality and season I guess. Blueberries and blackberries especially can be terrible sometimes. Raspberries are always good. One thing is they are expensive though. 4 or 5 bucks for a small thing of them which I can bang out in one shot easy.

Snack: berries, cherries, munster cheese, macadamia nuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, grape tomatoes:

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2012 3:44 pm 
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You can walk down just about any road around here, and pick and eat fresh blackberries all day long.

They grow like weeks and are considered invasive by most. In fact blackberry plants are almost solely responsible for the metoric rise of the rent-a-goat property clearing industry. :D

They (blackberries) are in season all through the summer and into September. There are also many berry farms in the area that grow all types of berries all year round.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 9:39 pm 
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Diamondeye wrote:
Which does include exercise. There's always people out there that would take the idea that "we aren't fat because we eat to much and exercise too little" to mean "I don't have to exercise, which I don't like doing because it makes me hot and sweaty."



Yeah definitely. I mean honestly if you're really over weight almost any changes you make will help. I have a lot of sympathy though because there is so much bad info out there. Some people eat low fat products and maybe some Kashi cereal and some whole grain breads and cereals, maybe even some tofu or whatever and think "hey I'm doing good." All those grains and especially the bread is just making it way harder on yourself I think. The low fat stuff is filled with sugar. It's just bad all around.

Then you're told to eat at a deficit, AND work out hard which makes you hungrier, and you eat those fattening foods that some people tell you is just fine. It's a mess.

So definitely sympathy for people who legitimately try, and fail. If you never put in an effort, well then nobody to blame but yourself.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 11:12 am 
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Fat definitely gets a bad rap in the media and among the general population these days. The amount of misinformation out there on nutrition is just... depressing. Everyone just knows that fat clogs your arteries and will kill you, it's just become a part of our culture. It's sad. So many people out there are trying to "eat healthy," but they don't know how to do that. And it's not their fault either, because the government has done a terrible job educating the public and the media is quite happy to keep on repeating the same myths and misconceptions about food.

I'm tired of the idea that something being dense in calories means it is unhealthy. Nevermind the fact that it will fill you up much faster and so you'll eat less of it.

And the obsession with calories in general bugs me. Like this new thing where we list the calorie content of food on restaurant menus. Why? A salad having 2,000 calories doesn't make it unhealthy. It means you get a lot of salad for your money and will have plenty left over to take home. But if given the option between a 2,000 calorie salad and a 500 calorie pasta dish, most would say the pasta is healthier...

Also, I've found a lot of people have a very distorted view of the amount of calories in the food we eat. It's most apparent if you check out the frozen dinners in a grocery store. I'm sorry, but 200 calories is not even close to a meal. People have this strange idea that eating over 500 calories in a meal is bad for you. Personally, I'm a young, reasonable active male. I need at least 2,500 calories a day just to maintain where I'm at. I rarely eat more than 500 calories for breakfast, so that leaves 2,000 calories for lunch and dinner. That makes a 1,000 calorie burrito from Chipotle the perfect sized meal for me.

Anyway, just ranting a bit. I've always been interested in nutrition, and right now my girlfriend has been doing a very low carb, ketogenic diet, so I basically eat low carb too. I think it's awesome, and just a healthier way to eat in general.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 11:28 am 
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It's just like Cholesterol. It got demonized around WWII in the medical literature, and stuck.

Heck, we measure cholesterol in foods, but when you go in to get your cholesterol levels checked, they don't even *measure* cholesterol. They measure lipoprotein densities, and assume some kind of even distribution-based correlation.

People have also lumped all "fats" together.

Olive oil is not the same as lard.

A handful of olives or almonds, while high in fat, is not the same thing as bacon or cracklins.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 11:54 am 
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It's interesting that you mention lard, because it has also been demonized quite a bit when I don't think it deserves it. It's actually relatively high in oleic acid, the fatty acid that makes up the majority of olive oil. It's not nearly as "bad" as people make it out to be. It has a lot less saturated fat than say, butter. And then of course you have to take into account the fact that not all saturated fatty acids affect cholesterol the same way, which just makes things complicated. I'm not saying it's great for you or anything, but it's not nearly as bad as most people would think. If you toasted a piece of white bread and spread some lard on top, I'd say it's the bread you should be worried about more.

Personally I render my own lard, which I get from a local farm where the pigs are raised on pastures. I've also got jars of duck fat and beef tallow, plus a good stock of butter. We definitely eat a "high fat" diet, but I can assure you it's quite tasty. =)


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 1:41 pm 
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Haha, that's what I get for pulling the first thing off the top of my head.

We eat a pretty moderately high fat diet as well.

Would be really nice to have some of the duck fat and beef tallow to cook with- I'm too lazy to render my own, and I don't know anyone around here that sells it at a decent price.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 9:44 pm 
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NephyrS wrote:
It's just like Cholesterol. It got demonized around WWII in the medical literature, and stuck.


I really reccommend watching that Fat Head documentary. They did a good bit on cholesterol there. The analogy he used to explain the anti cholesterol people was something along the lines of:

1. High crime areas get a lot more police calls.
2. We dont want any more crime so...
3. Dont call the police anymore.

Here's a short clip from the movie:


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 11:32 am 
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NephyrS wrote:
Would be really nice to have some of the duck fat and beef tallow to cook with- I'm too lazy to render my own, and I don't know anyone around here that sells it at a decent price.


It's not that much work. I don't really go out of my way to "make" duck fat or beef tallow. The lard was kind of an exception, but I bought a bunch of fat and rendered and froze enough to last me over a year. But with duck, I always buy a whole duck because it's about the same cost as just getting two duck breasts. There's a lot of fat on a duck. I'll usually freeze it, and after I get another duck I'll pull it out and just put all the fat in a pot and heat it up slowly for a couple hours. Strain that and you have duck fat. I also save the carcasses for some pretty awesome duck stock.

And then the beef tallow was just a spur of the moment thing. I was trimming like 15 lbs of chuck for some chili I was making for a big group, and there was just so much fat piling up. So I chopped it up some and just tossed it in a pot of boiling water while I was making my chili. Then you just strain it, cool it, and scoop the fat off the top.

Okay yeah, I know I probably didn't make it sound that easy. But my point is it's usually something I'm doing with scraps while I'm also cooking dinner, so it really doesn't take any extra time.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 7:41 am 
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I just watched Fat Head last night. I was actually a little disappointed. The film is pretty biased, with many weak arguments and a lot of libertarian/right-wing commentary that wasn't really necessary. I mean, I'm a libertarian and I agree with all of his conclusions about nutrition, so he's preaching to the choir here. I was just hoping for a film that would help convince my liberal/vegetarian friends that fat isn't bad for you and... I don't think this is it. But I still thought it was amusing and had some good info, so thanks for the recommendation.


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